(From October, 2010)
If you’ve been following me this fishing season, you know I’ve been catching my fair share of Tuna (along with other things). Over the last few weeks, I’ve been cooking and “canning” the meat in the newest and in my opinion the best way to preserve: retort pouches, a BPA-free flexible plastic and metal foil laminate pouch along the same lines as a Meal-Ready-to-Eat like the military uses.
I have completed 36 pouches with ZERO failures and have 24 more lightly smoked cooking now…using 35 seconds vacuum time and sealing 4.9 sec with 3.5 sec cooling time (in case you want to know).
Everyone comes out perfect!
I bought a newer pressure cooker. It is a 23 qt and is slightly taller than the others I have. The pouches stand up with 3 inches to spare from the top of the pot (without top on).
Even when opening cooker too soon…The bags are completely puffed up looking like they are going to explode and they vaccum back into share while watching them… (as they cool)
The “taller” pressure cooker is a plus (23 qt model).
I will never go back to jars…The pouches are sooooo much cleaner…no smell ……you could “can” with pouches indoors!
My North Pacific Albacore are caught one at a time with hook and line, never a net or longline, so my product is 100% dolphin safe. When a fish comes aboard the Midnight Rocket, it is immediately prepared and packed in an ice slurry for the trip home. At the end of the day, the fish go straight to canning. The sport vessel Midnight Rocket is a very fast, small boat, allowing me to make day trips instead of the usual 10 days most boats spend on the water. My fish usually go from the water to the pouch (or smoker) within 24 hours.
Want some? Too bad it’s not for sale. But if you get on my good side . . .